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The Court System
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The Court System

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  • 1. The Court System Scotland
  • 2. The Procurator Fiscal
    • After the police charge someone with a criminal offence they send the details of the case to the Procurator Fiscal who looks at the evidence and decides whether to proceed with the case.
    • The Procurator Fiscal also inquires into sudden or suspicious deaths and fatal accidents
  • 3. Criminal Courts Scottish Court of Criminal Appeal Judges from the High Court of Justiciary hear appeals High Court of Justiciary Most serious crimes. eg. murder and rape Solemn Procedure with judge or jury Sheriff Courts More serious offences eg. theft or assault Solemn procedure with sheriff and jury Summary procedure with sheriff Justice of Peace Courts Replaced district courts. Minor offences like breach of the peace Summary procedure with JP alone
  • 4. Maximum penalties in Criminal Court Scottish Court of Criminal Appeals High Court of Justiciary Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen have permanent High Courts Unlimited Fine/ Life imprisonment Sheriff Courts (49 Sheriff Courts) Summary - £10,000 fine – 12 months imprisonment Solemn – Unlimited fine – 3 years imprisonment Justice of the Peace Courts £2,500 fine, 60 days imprisonment
  • 5. Civil Courts Supreme Court (formerly House of Lords) Hears appeals from Court of Session http://www.supremecourt.gov.uk/ Court of Session Outer House – Cases involving large sums of money Inner House – Hears appeals from Sheriff Court and Outer House Sheriff Courts Hears majority of Civil cases eg. small money claims, divorce, eviction etc. Land Courts – settles crofting/ land disputes Tribunals – employment, immigration, property, disputes
  • 6. The Supreme Court
    • UK Judicial system
    • For historical reasons, as a state made up of several separate jurisdictions, the United Kingdom does not have a single unified legal system
    • Instead, there is one system for England and Wales, another for Scotland, and a third for Northern Ireland.
    • In most cases, The Supreme Court since 2009 sits above all of these as the final court of appeal
  • 7.  
  • 8. The Supreme Court (2009-)
    • The Supreme Court:
    • is the final court of appeal for all United Kingdom civil cases, and criminal cases from England, Wales and Northern Ireland and hears appeals on arguable points of law of general public importance. It concentrates on cases of the greatest public and constitutional importance
    • The Supreme Court hears appeals from the following courts in each jurisdiction:
    • England and Wales
    • The Court of Appeal, Civil Division
    • The Court of Appeal, Criminal Division
    • (in some limited cases) the High Court
    • Scotland
    • The Court of Session
    • Northern Ireland
    • The Court of Appeal in Northern Ireland
    • (in some limited cases) the High Court
  • 9. The Supreme Court UK
    • The Supreme Court consists of 12 Justices (Lords) supported by a professional legal and executive staff
    • See who’s who…
    • http://www.supremecourt.gov.uk/about/biographies.html
    • Current cases…
    • http://www.supremecourt.gov.uk/current-cases/index.html
    • Q and A on the Supreme Court…
    • http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8283967.stm
  • 10. Sentencing passed down by Scottish Courts http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/3080502.stm
    • Non-Custodial Sentence
    • Fines
    • Fixed penalty Notice
    • Supervised Attendance Order
    • Probation
    • Community Service Order
    • Restriction of Liberty Order (Electronic Tagging)
    • Drug Treatment and Testing Order
    • Community Reparation Order
    • Anti-Social Behaviour Order
    • Custodial sentence
  • 11. Children’s Hearing System
    • In Scotland children only appear in criminal court for serious offences like murder.
    • Cases involving children under 16 are dealt with by a Children’s Hearing (Children’s Panel)
  • 12. Referral Hearing Investigation Advice or Police Warning Voluntary Programme The outcome Appeal Discharge Supervision Order
  • 13. Research Task
    • Build up a small sub-folder of articles on the Scottish Court System
    • Write a detailed note to explain fully….
      • How the civil/ criminal system operates in Scotland
      • The role of a Procurator Fiscal
      • Any major differences with the rest of the UK
      • The place of the Scottish courts within the UK system
      • The role of the Supreme Court
      • The sentences that can be passed out in Scotland
      • The role of the Children’s Hearing System
      • Other relevant information